- Audio CD (12 Dec. 2008)
- Number of Discs: 1
- Format: CD
- Label: Bella Union
- ASIN: B00180OTAI
- Other Editions: Audio CD | Vinyl | MP3 Download
- Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars See all reviews (234 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 3,063 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
Fleet Foxes CD
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Critically acclaimed debut album from the Seattle five-piece showcasing their folk/rock sound. Having risen to prominence in 2008 after the release of their well-received second EP 'Sun Giant', the Fleet Foxes' first full length album achieved a top five spot in the UK Albums chart. It includes the singles 'White Winter Hymnal' and 'He Doesn't Know Why'.
It's now twenty years since grunge emerged from then culturally isolated Seattle and Fleet Foxes, the eponymous debut album from the city's latest heroes, demonstrates just how much American independent rock has mutated in that time. The five young members of Fleet Foxes make up a very different sort of rock band, describing their own music as "baroque harmonic pop jams". Even that understates the depths of the quintet's effortless vocal harmonies and gently woozy, folky feel. Of their contemporaries only the enigmatic Midlake and My Morning Jacket at their most fragile come close, but neither could have cooked up the Beach Boys spiritual of "White Winter Hymnal" or its more powerful companion piece "Ragged Wood". In fact Fleet Foxes happily admit to aspiring to an earlier tradition--not just obvious antecedents like the Byrds, the Association, Neil Young and, especially, David Crosby's famously unfocussed solo album If Only I Could Remember My Name but ancient English folk songs and their later American descendents. All were hunted and gathered from the internet--songwriters Robin Pecknold and Skye Skjelset are barely in their twenties. Add a host of unlikely instruments and the results are stunning, the complete antithesis of mainstream stadium indie that has followed Arcade Fire. Still, the cover features a Bruegel painting of peasants that might have graced any Black Sabbath sleeve. In that way at least Fleet Foxes salute a local tradition. -Steve Jelbert
Top Customer Reviews
Opener Sun It Rises begins with a bluesy sounding acapella before an acoustic guitar brings in a far more West Coast sound. A lovely beginning. White Winter Hymnal is an amazing track, the opening line repeated like a round as more voices join in to layer the harmonies on top of one another. The track builds before breaking down to just the voices again at the end. Simple but brilliant. Frequent references to the landscape and wildlife give the album a pastoral folksy feel typified by tracks like Meadowlarks and Blue Ridge Mountains. Ragged Wood has that country feel before quietening and allowing the voices to take control, making it two tracks in one really. Robin Peknold sings alone on Tiger Mountain Peasant Song to great effect, sounding like an ancient balladeer; the music both classical and contemporary. He Doesn't Know Why is a great pop song. Your Protector sounds like it could come from Civil War era America and with its flutes reminded me for some reason of Simon and Garfunkel. The album finishes with Oliver James, which tells the sad tale of a drowning.Read more ›
The missing tracks are
1. "She Got Dressed"
2. "In the Hot, Hot Rays"
3. "Anyone Who's Anyone"
4. "Textbook Love"
5. "So Long to the Headstrong"
6. "Icicle Tusk"
Anyone expecting to find these tracks here will be disappointed; it would have been nice to have had them added as bonus tracks.
However, that is a minor quibble and what you do get is superb timeless music with many influences - but still able to sound fresh and original. Robin Pecknold and Skyler Skjelset are the main members influencing the band's sound and direction and both are still relatively young - their musical maturity reflecting the diversity of their parent's musical taste. I didn't think I would ever hear another contemporary version of False Knight on the Road, a classic from the Martin Carthy era Steeleye Span (Child Ballad No 3), but Fleet Foxes tackle it and make it their own.
That's just one example of their varied influences; if someone had played me the album and told me it was a lost sixties classic I could easily have believed it. And yet it still manages to sound fresh and relevant to today; a rare achievement. It is classic American music that will stand the test of time - I just hope the follow-up, due later this year, can live up to the expectation. If you have enjoyed BBC4's recent season of Folk America programmes you will love the music here too.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Vocals play such a primary role in Fleet Foxes' music that Pecknold's lyrics at times sound like merely a delivery system for harmonies, with references to meadowlarks, rising... Read morePublished 18 days ago by Freddie's Dad
white winter hymnal
he doesnt know why
i stumbled upon fleet foxes by chance. Read more
Wonderful service and quality from sender. Excellent album!Published 3 months ago by Amazon Customer
It's quite simply beautiful music. More folk than rock (in fact almost purely folk IMHO). The songs sound simple, but the construction of vocals and instruments is breathtakingly... Read morePublished 4 months ago by Martin Ohara
Since it's release I've been keen on this album. 5 years on and I feel no different. A real chiller and fntastic for those times when you don't want something heavy, but still want... Read morePublished 5 months ago by Oliver Franks